Sunday, October 19, 2008

Dear Geico

I love your funny “caveman” ads, but disrespect for our ancestors is looked down upon by many cultures of the world. Your underlying message seems to be, “It not only takes a village, it takes a village idiot named Caveman to sell insurance.” During the Ice Age it made sense to live in caves!

The most famous cavemen were the Neanderthals.  New Man, that is what Neanderthal means, is my brother. The Choctaw, of which I am a member, have a tradition that all people spoke the same language (Choctaw) and that after building a tall mound to reach the sky the languages were confused. This is a variant rendition of the historical account of the Tower of Babel found in Genesis (Adam’s favorite book). That is, all peoples, including Neanders, have a common origin. An update from the journal Archaeology provides evidence that Neanderthals and moderns interbred.  

Some Neanderthals had red hair! Neanders made wood structures covered with hide. They made javelins, a flute, body ornaments and used fire and spices for cooking. They even made a deep underground structure without natural light. 

A fascinating piece, "Neanderthals are Still Human” shows that the hyoid bone, which is important in speech, is the same as the hyoid bone in moderns.  Also their brains were bigger. There were also ritualistic burials with goat bones. Jack Cuozzo had the opportunity to x-ray some of the original Neander skulls in Europe and found that they must have lived to the great old age of around 200 years!

The mitochondrial evidence that some claim puts the Neandertals into a separate group actually falls within the range of modern genetic dispersion.

I would encourage your fine organization to concentrate on advertising customer value and fair pricing rather that putting down our brilliant relatives from a few thousand years ago. Stress the actuarial basis for honest pricing rather than picking on the noble caveman!

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